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PayPal ‘We Declined Your Last Transaction’ Phishing Scam Email

by Brett M. Christensen

According to an email that purports to be from PayPal, the company has declined your last transaction for your safety. 

Supposedly, the transaction looked suspicious so PayPal limited your account for security reasons. The email claims that you must follow a link to confirm that you are indeed the account holder.

But, despite its appearance, the email is not from PayPal and your transaction has not been declined as claimed.  Instead, it is a phishing scam designed to steal your personal and financial information.

If you click the “Confirm Now” button, you will be taken to a fraudulent website that has been built to emulate a genuine PayPal page. The fake page first asks you to log in with your PayPal email address and password.

Next, you will be asked to fill in a series of forms that request your credit card details, your name, address, and contact information, and other identifying information.

After you have submitted the forms, you may see a final message advising that you have successfully confirmed your account and lifted the supposed limitation.

Criminals can now collect the information you supplied and use it to take control of your PayPal account, fraudulently use your credit card, and attempt to steal your identity.

PayPal customers are almost continually targetted in scam campaigns similar to this one.

Always login to PayPal by entering the PayPal address into your web browser.

Remember that PayPal will always address you by name in notification emails. It will not omit this greeting nor will it use generic greetings such as “Dear Customer.

PayPal has published information on its website that helps users identify phishing scams. 

An example of the scam email:

PayPal Declined Transaction Phishing Scam

Transcript of the scam email:

We declined your last transaction for your safety We declined your last transaction for your safety As you know, your last transaction was recently declined. What you may not know is that it was because Your transaction looks suspicious or someone using your account without your permission so we limit your account. Let’s make sure it doesn’t happen again. For your safety, we must confirm you are indeed the account holder to prevent fraud.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,